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cousin camp, day four

July 12, 2011

I have post-summer-camp-itis.  It’s that dis-ease that settles in once sleep finally revisits your eyelids, your bags are unpacked, musty clothes shuttled to (but not necessarily back from) the laundry, you’ve hung up your Super Hero Cape (more on that later), and you’re moping around in a gray funk missing your bosom buddies.  These are my bosom buddies from Cousin Camp 2011.

cousin camp summer ice cream

Actually, my bags are not yet unpacked.  I’ll deal with my inadequacies later.  For now, it’s more important to pin down memories as ornery as horse flies in their determination to fly away from me.

Day four.  A little bit louder a little bit worse.  Worse in the stains department that is.  Take a look at these previously white t-shirts.  Really.  They used to look cute. (Any laundry industry casting agents lurking around this site?  We’ve got three grubby models for hire!)

cousin camp portrait

Um.  Yeah.  Let’s try that again after telling Miss Tasmanian Devil to freeze.

cousin camp fun run

And they say the third time’s the charm.  FREEZE!

cousin camp t-shirts

Some things may indeed go to the laundry but never come from.  Just saying.

Day Four began with some serious Super Hero outfitting.  Super Heroes, in case you are one of the ignorant minions plowing through life unaware of the Supers among us, must have capes.  And the capes must be decorated superbly.  With things like flowers.  And butterflies.  And pink-n-purple things.

creating the super hero capes

Of course not all Super Heroes are into the pink-n-purple things.  Some Cousin Super Heroes prefer footballs.  And more footballs.  And some football helmets.  And maybe a few flowers.  Yellow ones are boy flowers, didn’t you know?!

But the result is pretty eye-catching.  Everywhere the troop went today, capes flying behind them, Super Hero theme music blaring (in my head, that is), people commented on the Super Hero handiwork.  People did not comment on the stain-dripped, yellowing t-shirts.  For that ability to ignore the obvious, I send some Super Hero power blessings their way.

Here’s a brief moment of Super Hero Cape modeling in which Little Friend showed some understanding of the word “freeze.”

super hero capes

(Incidentally, should you be tempted to release your inner Super Hero too, creating a cape is as simple as cutting up an old t-shirt, visiting the craft store for some stick-on felt decor, and following this great tutorial pinned on my Pinterest board.)

Day Four of Cousin Camp was as fun-filled as the previous three.

Cousin Camp Thursday
With a children’s section that’s the envy of every stultifying library everywhere, the James V. Brown library was a must visit.  They have a reading tent.

James V Brown Library reading tent

And the best part of all libraries everywhere (stultified or otherwise), the fun can come home with you.

Cousin Camp books

Ah the joys of princesses, mermaids, and pink, pink, pink.

For the adults in the Cousin Camp entourage, the highlight of the day was something much more high brow and refined.  Spider Spaghetti.  Or Octopus Hot Dogs, depending on who you ask.  It’s as appealingly repulsive as it sounds.  You cut up hot dogs, skewer some strands of dry spaghetti through them, and throw the whole darn mutated beast into a pot of boiling water.

spider dogs uncooked

Disgusting?  Yes.

Delicious?  Erm…

Like a train wreck you just can’t tear your eyes away from?  YES!

Itty Bitty licked her Spider/Octopus once before rejecting it out of hand.  Buddy and Little Friend were more eager to bathe their beasts in blood baths (ketchup or spaghetti sauce?  We couldn’t quite figure out which way to go with these mutants) and gnash them to pieces with sharp incisors.

Spider dogs.  My sister finds the coolest kids’ ideas.

Of course, how could any self-respecting summer camp exist without an outdoors water game day?  Day Four of Cousin Camp Ushered in the Great Banoodle and Sponge Ball Battles.  (More great Pinterest ideas.  Don’t you just loooove Pinterest?  If you don’t know what I’m talking about, I’ll catch you up in a future post.  It’ll kinda be like the day you discovered Facebook.  For better or worse, your life changed on that day.)

A Banoodle Battle is pretty complex.  You take a pool noodle and an arsenal of balloons.  Then, and here comes the complexity, you whack the bejeezus out of the balloons.

balloon pool noodle game

banoodle game

Some cousins whack the balloons to pop them.  Some cousins sit on the balloons to pop them.  Some cousins lose their pants.  For no explicable reason.

The balloons popped more quickly than the Camp Counselors’ cheeks could inflate more, so Round One of Banoodle ended as quickly as it began.  Luckily, Sponge Ball was waiting in the wings.  Round Two…

Again, a simple Martha Stewart derived concept.  Take some dollar-store sponges.  Cut them up.  Tie them together to make crazy cool balls that look like this:

sponge balls

Soak the sponge balls in a bucket or kiddie pool.

Then relax the “no throwing things at other people” rule.  Just keep the “no throwing things at me” rule firm.

Day Four ended with the inevitable realization that just one day of Cousin Camp remained.  How did that happen so quickly?  Then again, looking at these shirts, you’d think we’d been at it for a month:

cousin camp t-shirts

Here’s a postcard I didn’t receive this week from my Little Friend camper.  Could she write, I’m sure this is what she’d say:

Hey Mom.
Cousin Camp super fun.

I ate lots of ice cream.  And juice boxes.

We went for a hike and jumped on a trampoline and drove bumper cars and read books and caught lightning bugs and had a not-a-sleepover and saw a movie and ran around like crazy people and made Super Hero capes and pelted each other with sponge balls and fed the ducks and licked ice cream cones.

Oh, and I ate an octopus. It tasted super good.

I don’t ever want to go home.

Little Friend

4 Comments leave one →
  1. Dad permalink
    July 12, 2011 8:40 am

    Cousin Camp, what a great idea and it looks like a bunch of fun, at least for the Cape Crusaders, but a lot of work for the Moms. You guys should figure out a way to market Cousin Camp.

  2. Nancy permalink
    July 12, 2011 9:49 am

    Cousin camp is awesome. You are creating wonderful memories along with free and happy spirits

  3. Faith permalink
    July 12, 2011 11:05 am

    Just from my own early memories of life…cousins were always part of them! How fun cousins can be growing up…..keep making memories! Love it!

  4. Martha permalink
    July 12, 2011 5:32 pm

    As I read about cousin camp, I knew these ideas could only come from school teachers. I have loved all your adventures and I am so glad you are making such memories for all of you when your kids are little. These are memories they will talk about when they are my age. Last year, we had a family reunion that I organized and now I wonder what took so long. It was so much fun with my cousins. The day went by so fast and I am looking forward to getting together with many of them at a wedding in August.

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